Pharmacist Union Threatens To Down Tools Over Kidnapping

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The Afghanistan Pharmacists Services Union (APSU) on Wednesday gave the government one week to secure the release of a colleague who has been kidnapped otherwise it will stop importing pharmaceuticals and stop all services nationally.

“The private medical sector has given government one week to secure the release of (the son of) one of our colleagues. If not they will stop importing medicine and stop activities across the country,” said Tawfiq Dawari, the deputy head of the Afghanistan Chamber of Commerce and Industries (ACCI) at a press conference in Kabul.

The decision comes after Azatullah Khoshhal Alokozai’s son Nahzatullah, was kidnapped in Kabul 18 days ago. Alokozai owns Rohullah Nasrat LTD., a medical supply company.

Alokozai claims that in almost three weeks, since his son’s kidnapping, government has done little to secure his release.

Azatullah has demanded government takes steps to free his son.

“Nahzatullah was kidnapped by unknown gunmen about 17 days ago in Khair Khana area of the capital when he was on his way to school,” said Alokozai.

He in turn blamed government elements for being involved in the recent spate of kidnappings.

He has warned that the industry will stop all medical activities in the country if nothing is done. He gave government a week to do this.

“Government has one week to secure the release my son otherwise all medical business activities in country will be stopped,” he said.

Meanwhile the ACCI deputy head Tawfiq Dawari said that the issue of kidnapping is totally unacceptable to the private sector. He said it was wrong that the sector had to deal with such issues on top of the bad security situation in the country.

“Government is not supporting the private sector, it takes taxes, customs duties from them but still they ignore their responsibilities,” Dawari said.

The ACCI deputy blasted government for not standing by the private sector and warned that businessmen are already looking at dis-investing in the capital and finding alternate markets.

“What will happen to the faith of the people if the private sector says no to government or dis-invests?” asked Dawari.

Dawari further added that the spate of kidnappings, bullying, robberies etc are not acceptable to the private sector and if it continues it could lead to a crisis.

“No one is listening to the problems of the private sector, especially the kidnapping problem. Often kidnappers are not being prosecuted for their crimes,” Dawari added.

Security institutions are yet to comment on the kidnapping.

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